of Venus, goddess of love. Also, according to Greek legend the child
of Zephyrus, the west wind and lris, the rainbow.
Cupid was romantically associated with Psyche, who was possessed of
such beauty that Venus, consumed with jealousy, sent her son to vent
her spite on the girl. Instead, Cupid fell in love with Psyche and spirited
her away to a secret palace. When Cupid visited Psyche he remained invisible,
but made the mistake of allowing his lover to see her sisters who convinced
Psyche she should find out what Cupid looked like. Psyche took a lamp
to watch him while he slept, but a drop of hot oil fell on his shoulder.
He woke up and flew away. Psyche searched for him, despite being harassed
by Venus and enduring many hardships until Jupiter eventually reunited
her with Cupid.
The Greek Eros was associated with Creation, being the entity who brought
harmony to Chaos, making the world habitable.
Cupid is most popularly depicted as a winged boy with a bow and quiver
of arrows, an idea artists used frequently, without the weapons, in
the more Christian cherubim and putti. The sculpture of the Angel of
Christian Charity in London's Piccadilly Circus was a memorial dedicated
to Lord Shaftesbury who worked so hard on behalf of the Victorian disadvantaged,
but this has become more popularly known as Eros.
In the deity's earlier representations he was quite often shown in the
company of Psyche.